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The Council of Europe

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Chapter Summary

The Council of Europe was created in 1949 to achieve greater unity between European States. It is the guardian of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. The Council is a traditional intergovernmental organisation, promoting cooperation among its members. Its aims were to defend human rights, parliamentary democracy, and the rule of law; to develop continent-wide agreements standardizing member countries' social and legal practices; and to promote awareness of a European identity based on shared values that cut across different cultures. The initial European Social Charter, the counterpart of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) in the social domain, was signed on 18 October 1961 in Rome and came into force on 26 February 1965. The Steering committee is the intergovernmental body responsible for defending, stimulating and conducting the Council of Europe's actions to promote equality between women and men.

Keywords: Council of Europe; European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR); European social charter; gender equality; steering committee



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